Ross Brawn has been mulling over the possibility of lifting away the blue flags and let the lead cars overtake lapped cars naturally. Blue flags indicate to a slower car that they are about to be lapped and must let the approaching car past safely.
Brawn, who is now Formula One Managing Director of Motorsports thinks that it would make the racing much more exciting. Liberty Media, the new owners of F1 are poised to introduce a series of changes to sharpen up the sport after the 40 year reign of Bernie Ecclestone.
"Ken Tyrrell was famous because his drivers were told never to let anyone overtake even if they were lapping you! My instinct is that it would be fun to get rid of the blue flags because they created some challenge in the race. A modern racing driver, if he is at the front of the field, you hear him on the radio all the time 'Tell him to give him the blue flags! Tell him to give him the blue flags!'
"They want free passage and mentally they are attuned to getting free passage. But surely the racing drivers years ago knew they wouldn't get free passage and they'd have to get past whoever was in front of them."
"And that does create some uncertainty in the race, and may argue it's not as pure because the guys at the front should be allowed free rein, but I think we are at risk of over-regulating in the racing. The whole debate is going on about penalties for drivers and so on and I see that the FIA has just made a change now that, unless it is a very serious issue, they are not going to apply any in-race penalties, which I think is moving in the right direction."
"Clearly if someone does something that is very aggressive and totally out of order, then you've got to react, but let a little bit of argy-bargy go on -- that's racing. For instance, Verstappen was a great breath of fresh air in Formula One. He was very aggressive and upset a few people, but that's racing and that's what we want. I don't think he ever did anything outrageous, so we need to just step back a bit on all of that."
Bahrain International Circuit - Winter testing
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